Monday Night Raw – August 3, 2020

Monday Night Raw
Date: August 3, 2020
Location: WWE Performance Center, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Samoa Joe, Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton

Things might be on the verge of a big shakeup around here as we have two big deals going on in a single show. First up we have Shane McMahon making his return after about nine months away with some kind of a big announcement. Other than that, there is a new faction debuting, which isn’t usually the kind of thing you have announced in advance. Let’s get to it.

Opening sequence.

The announcers welcome us to the show and the lights flicker a bit.

US Title: Apollo Crews vs. MVP

Crews is defending and the lights go out again during his entrance. The Hurt Business is here with MVP, who has the new title. Before the match, MVP says this should have happened at Extreme Rules but Lashley went full Lashley. After tonight, this is all done and Crews can go hang out with Ricochet and Cedric Alexander in catering. Crews grabs a headlock to no avail to start so MVP stomps him on the foot as the flickering continues.

Crews is right back with a shoulder and a snap suplex for two. We hit the armbar on MVP for a bit before Crews hammers away on the ropes. MVP is sent outside for more flickering so Crews hits a big flip dive onto the whole team. Back from a break with MVP working on a cravate before putting on something like a camel clutch in the ropes. MVP elbows away in the corner but misses a running big boot. A crossbody into a spinebuster gives Crews two, followed by the Toss Powerbomb to retain the title at 10:35.

Rating: C-. Just a match here and not exactly thrilling stuff. That being said, this has felt like a path to get to Lashley vs. Crews at Summerslam and having a part time wrestler lose isn’t going to hurt anything. Crews getting some more wins where he has to fight from behind is a good thing and hopefully we get somewhere else with him going forward.

Post match Crews has to run from the threat of a full nelson.

In the back, Crews talks about how strong Lashley is. That power kept him sitting at home and not being able to turn his head. His kids thought he was the real champion and now he can give them the old belt to hang in their room to see the first title their daddy ever won. Thanks for paying for the new belt MVP. Good emotion from Crews here.

Back in the arena, MVP rants about the lights flickering causing an unsafe working environment (the line we have to get in at least twice a year). Crews missed Extreme Rules and now he steals his title. MVP wants his rematch at Summerslam.

Sasha Banks and Bayley are very happy with having all of the gold. They don’t like being asked a bunch of questions, like if they will be defending their titles at Summerslam. They’re going to spice things up, so here’s a video tribute….to themselves, mainly focusing on Sasha beating Asuka last week. Asuka interrupts and says revenge will be very, very sweet. Bayley and Banks are not happy but here’s Shayna Baszler to interrupt. She has a bit of a problem with this and slaps Banks down.

The IIconics offer to be on the Kevin Owens Show but he already has guests. They can have a water instead.

It’s time for the Kevin Owens Show but his microphone keeps cutting out. He knows Shane McMahon is back tonight but he would rather talk to his guest: Ruby Riott. Ruby comes out and says she has dealt with “toxic sad broads” like the IIconics her whole life. Then last week she put an end to the IIconic bull****. Riott wished Liv Morgan could have been there to share it with her, so here’s Liv to join them. Liv doesn’t seem happy and asks for Ruby to say what she wants to say.

Owens remembers the two of them when they started and, after his mic cuts out again, says he remembers the two of them and Sarah starting something special. Owens traveled the world with them and doesn’t want this to be messed up. Ruby gets very emotional and talks about coming back here and thinking everything would be the same. Now Sarah is gone though and Ruby blamed Liv for everything.

That wasn’t fair and she looks at the tattoo with their debut date and all she wants is another chance. All she wants is one more chance for the Riott Squad to be stronger than ever, but here are the IIconics to interrupt. Owens: “I had nothing to do with that.” Kay isn’t sure why Ruby was so happy with one win after 400 losses in a row. Peyton, with her mic cutting in and out again, talks about how they are best friends.

Liv says that she and Ruby aren’t IIconic but they can start a riot like no one else. Owens thinks the IIconics should leave but a challenge is issued instead. The IIconics can’t decide who should do their catchphrase, so Owens asks if we can get some more technical difficulties for just the two of them. Peyton slaps him so the Squad jumps them to start the fight.

Back from a break and a delivery man tries to bring some drinks to a locker room. A rather large security guard glares him off. This seems to be associated with Shane McMahon.

Riott Squad vs. IIconics

Owens is on commentary and Kay Regal Cutters Riott for an early two. Peyton comes in for the chinlock before it’s back to Billie, who gets superkicked down. Liv comes in and hits some clotheslines into a spinning faceplant to Peyton. Kay kicks her down though and drags Peyton over for the tag. Not that it matters as Ruby grabs a rollup for the pin at 2:34.

Post match the IIconics jump Liv again but Ruby makes the save. A double STO plants Kay.

Earlier today, a loud noise was heard and some crates were knocked over backstage with some technical equipment falling out. Some people say it was deliberate but MVP comes in to complain about losing earlier. There is some good news for him though: he gets his rematch for the title at Summerslam. Shelton Benjamin comes up to say someone stole his title.

Here’s Drew McIntyre for a chat. He talks about Randy Orton has spent twenty years preying on vulnerability and then coming after McIntyre last week after an Extreme Rules match. McIntyre should have seen it coming and that’s on him. He has gotten in trouble for being lazy before and that was why Vince McMahon fired him. Orton has had everything handed to him over the years though and has gotten in so much trouble over the years that he should have been fired a long time ago.

Cue Orton with Ric Flair to say he wants to be here because he enjoys being here. He enjoys hitting RKOs and punting heads. Orton likes Drew’s spirit, which is going to make beating him at Summerslam all the sweeter. McIntyre says Orton should have been fired years ago and he’s right. Orton should have been fired multiple times but Drew was the one who was fired. That’s because Orton was more valuable to this company than Drew ever could be. He has gotten chance after chance because he is the chosen one, then now and forever.

Drew has been quoting legends, but what has he done that makes him that great. McIntyre talks about Undertaker saying he pulled Orton up to his level in the Last Ride, but when has Orton ever done that? How about ten years ago? When Drew’s career was falling down around him and he was self destructing, a kind word from someone like Orton could have changed everything.

Drew looks at Orton and sees a selfish jerk, so at Summerslam it’s time to cash in some receipts both for himself and all the legends that Orton has kicked in the head. This time though, Orton will see it coming. This was good stuff and the kind of thing that can build up a match that makes all the sense in the world on paper.

Ric Flair comes up to Kevin Owens in the back and asks the Riott Squad to leave them alone. Flair talks about the history the two of them have and how much he respects Owens. However, Flair thinks Owens might be too worried about everyone else. Owens isn’t trying to be a guidance counselor but now he is trying to be a better person. Like what Randy Orton could be if he wanted to be.

Flair thinks that’s pretty strong and says he’s giving Owens advice he needs to listen to. Mind your own business and take care of yourself and maybe you can get your own Summerslam title match. Owens says if Flair cares so much, Owens can show him how much fight he has against Orton next week. Flair seems to like the idea.

Here are Nia Jax and agent Pat Buck, who Jax attacked last week. Nia seems emotional about it but doesn’t like a scrawny runt from management who couldn’t make it in his own career stepping to her, it is her responsibility to step back. She didn’t see Buck there but offers him a match right here and right now.

Buck says no and he’s only here for an apology. Jax says he can have one after their match and this is his big chance. That’s still a no, but she was expecting more fire from a ginger like him. Jax tells him to say what he has to say so Buck suspends her without pay. That earns him a quick knockdown and a kick to the floor as Jax screams a lot.

Jax goes to leave but here’s R-Truth with the 24/7 Title as he runs away from Akira Tozawa and the Ninjas. Shelton Benjamin comes out as well and it’s time for a scheduled title match.

24/7 Title: Akira Tozawa vs. Shelton Benjamin vs. R-Truth

Shelton, with the Hurt Business, is defending and beats up Truth to start. Tozawa’s rollup gets one and it’s time to panic. Tozawa misses his spinning kick to the head and the punches to the ribs have no effect. Shelton hits a heck of a powerbomb on Tozawa (that looked great) but Truth is back to kick away. Paydirt plants Truth but one of the ninjas comes in to flip around a lot. Shelton kicks him in the head and throws him into the ropes (that wasn’t good) and the rest of the Hurt Business goes after the other Ninjas. Back in and Tozawa hits the top rope backsplash to pin Truth for the title at 2:07.

We see a bunch of people standing around a ring with no ropes and two guys grappling. Shane McMahon pops up and says tonight at 10pm, it’s Raw Underground.

We look back at Murphy taking out Aleister Black’s eye last week, plus Dominic Mysterio attacking Murphy and Seth Rollins.

Dominic is asked a rather important question: why is he still here? Dominic says he’s here because his dad was blinded, so of course his mind hasn’t been in the right place as of late. If people think he’s crazy now, how crazy will they think he is when he challenges Seth Rollins to a match at Summerslam?

Shayna Baszler vs. Sasha Banks

Non-title and Sasha has Bayley in her corner. Sasha slaps her in the face to start and is quickly taken down, allowing Baszler to tease a kick to the face. Instead she shoves Sasha a bit and Banks isn’t pleased. A kick to the leg cuts Banks down again and stomps down on the hand for a bonus. Baszler grabs a double underhook into a cross armbreaker but Banks rolls over to the ropes for a break on the floor.

A Bayley distraction lets Banks send Shayna into the corner for two. Baszler rolls through a high crossbody though and hits a nasty/somewhat messed up backbreaker for two of her own. The Kirifuda Clutch is blocked though and Banks pulls her into the Bank Statement. That’s broken up as well so Banks hits a knee to the face. That earns her a knee to the face though and they’re both down. Cue Asuka to go after Bayley though….and that’s a DQ at 4:50?

Rating: C+. It was nice while it lasted but this show needs to work on its DQ rules. I went back to make sure I didn’t miss anything on the DQ but how else are they going to get to the tag match? Asuka and Baszler are a weird team, but who else is supposed to challenge for the titles at Summerslam? The Riott Squad?

Post match Asuka chases Banks to the floor and I think you know where this is going.

Indeed it’s a promo from Asuka, who is asked about last week when she went to save Kairi Sane, costing herself the Raw Women’s Title in the process. After seeing the ending of the match, Asuka says Kairi will be ok but for now, she is here and so are Bayley and Banks. She wants her rematch for the title at Summerslam but Shayna pops up next to her. Baszler is cheering for Asuka because she wants Asuka to get the title back so she can take it next. Cue Banks and Bayley to say Asuka can face Bayley next week. If she wins, then she gets the title shot. Bayley doesn’t seem pleased.

Angel Garza hits on a woman named Demi, who is from the Bachelor. Andrade doesn’t seem pleased and neither does Zelina Vega, who says Demi doesn’t belong here.

Back at Raw Underground, Shane declares one of them men the winner as some women dance in the background. This has the potential to be a disaster in the making.

After a break, Shane introduces Raw Underground, where there are very few rules and a lot of carnage. We’ve got a fight to start between Daba Kato, who is over 7’ tall, and a much smaller guy. The smaller guy charges at him to no avail. Kato beats the tar out of him for the win in 19 seconds. Another guy comes up and gets taken down with a spinning Rock Bottom. Elbows to the face finish him in about 15 seconds. Kato throws the guy to the floor and asks who is next. More on this later.

Here are the Street Profits for a pair of singles matches, but first Dawkins wants to hit on Demi. Ford wants him to be more serious, because it’s time to get ready for Summerslam. They have a bond like James, unlike the Angel Garza and Andrade, who Zelina Vega threw together. They want the smoke.

Angel Garza vs. Angelo Dawkins

Dawkins starts fast by sending Garza outside. That means a ram into the Plexiglas and we take a fast break. Back with Dawkins working on the arm before hitting a dropkick for two as Demi is watching backstage, with the rose Garza gave her. Garza fights back up and TAKES OFF HIS PANTS, setting up his own middle rope dropkick. The Wing Clipper is blocked and Dawkins hits his spinning splash in the corner. There’s a bulldog but Ford falls down without being touched. Garza hits a superkick and a dropkick to the side of the face for the pin at 5:52. Not enough shown to rate but the Ford deal seems more important.

Montez Ford vs. Andrade

Joined in progress with Ford slipping out of an armbar and grabbing a waistlock as commentary wonders what was wrong with him. Ford is fine enough to flip out of a wristlock and slap on a headlock. That’s reversed with a belly to back suplex and Andrade kicks him to the floor where Ford is holding his ribs. Ford reverses a whip into the barricade and they head back inside, where Andrade gets in a hard shot to the face. A snap suplex gives Andrade two and we hit the chinlock.

That brings Ford back to life for some elbows and a flip over Andrade. A jumping clothesline has Ford’s eyes bugging out again but he charges into a shot to the chest. Ford is back up with a dropkick to knock Andrade off the top and there’s the big running flip dive to take him down again. Back in and Ford shakes the ropes…but collapses again and the referee stops it at 4:58.

Rating: C. The storylines are strong with this show and I’ll give them points for seeing where they are going with this one. It’s certainly different and something that we haven’t seen in a long time so maybe they have something different. That being said, I’ll need to see where it is going before deciding how good it is.

Murphy watches a clip of him attacking Aleister Black’s eye last week and doesn’t seem pleased with himself. Seth Rollins is proud of him though and says focus on the future. As for the Summerslam challenge from Dominic, Murphy thinks it’s ridiculous but Seth smiles and walks off.

We go back to Raw Underground with Erik of the Viking Raiders fighting another unnamed fighter. Erik takes him down and hammers away, followed by a hard German suplex. The other guy is kicked out of the ring but gets thrown back in for some knees to the chest. Erik finally wins via stoppage. Adding in a wrestler we know is a better idea.

There is no update on Montez Ford but Angel Garza comes up to offer Charly Caruso a rose. Zelina and Andrade come up to say they’re worried about Ford as well, but what does this mean for the Summerslam Tag Team Title match? Angelo Dawkins walks out of the trainer’s room and says someone might have poisoned Ford. Bianca Belair comes out of the room as well to say Zelina has one chance to say what happened. Zelina asks how stupid Belair thinks she is so the earrings come off and they both have to be held back.

We see some security camera footage from earlier where five people in masks threw a fireball at a power generator and blew it up, likely causing the technical issues all night long.

The Hurt Business doesn’t like being asked about their bad night when everything is going insane around here. They find it interesting that this is happening when the Raw Underground stuff starts up and go to look into it.

Here’s what’s coming next week.

We look back at Seth Rollins destroying Rey Mysterio and tormenting his family.

Here are Seth Rollins and Murphy so Seth can make a statement, but first he wants to ask Tom Phillips if he is an unbiased journalist. What was he doing last week when Dominic was attacking Seth with a kendo stick? Rollins starts shouting about Phillips cheering him on and inciting his rage. It’s the bias (oh it’s time to get topical) that causes these problems, so Murphy is going to take care of Phillips. Samoa Joe stands up and says that isn’t happening because he was laughing harder than anyone last week.

Rollins says Joe doesn’t want to do this but Joe says he does. Rollins and Murphy roll inside and tell Joe to come join them. Joe takes off the coat and we go to a break. Back with Joe still not in the ring but here’s Dominic with a kendo stick to lay out Murphy and Rollins. Dominic hits a big dive off the top to take both of them down and the two run off. Rollins grabs the mic and says the match is on for Summerslam.

Back at Raw Underground, Dolph Ziggler beats someone up and chokes him out in a hurry. The Hurt Business shows up and says they’re taking over, with Lashley ruling the ring. A guy comes after him and is immediately taken down with no trouble. MVP gets in the ring as well and Shelton Benjamin throws someone else inside to get beaten up as well. That’s enough for MVP to be called off by a referee so Lashley throws the guy to the floor.

MVP asks who is next but someone has said something about Shelton’s mama (ANYONE but Mama Benjamin). Shelton dispatches him with ease and the Hurt Business drops tot he floor and beats up a bunch of people without much effort. Shane seems pleased and says anything goes around here. They can come back anytime they want and MVP says business is booming to end the show.

Overall Rating: C. Well it was certainly different, and that’s a good thing given how the show has been going as of late. That being said, I’m not exactly thrilled with the idea of an underground fight club breaking out at the arena. It’s certainly a far cry from the Brawl For All of course, but we could be in for some interesting ideas in the coming weeks.

This was definitely the “throw stuff at the wall and see what doesn’t bomb” show, and after everything else going as it did recently, that might not be the worst idea. I’m disappointed in a faction being “introduced” as I wouldn’t call seeing them blow stuff up to be an introduction, but it was better than nothing. I’ll have to see where a lot of this goes, but it has me somewhat interested and that’s a good thing.

Results

Apollo Crews b. MVP – Toss powerbomb

Riott Squad b. IIconics – Rollup to Kay

Akira Tozawa b. R-Truth and Shelton Benjamin – Top rope backsplash to R-Truth

Sasha Banks vs. Shayna Baszler went to a no contest when Asuka interfered

Angel Garza b. Angelo Dawkins – Dropkick to the side of the head

Andrade b. Montez Ford via referee stoppage

 

Remember to check out my website at kbwrestlingreviews.com and pick up the paperback edition of KB’s Complete 2004 Monday Night Raw Reviews (also available as an e-book) from Amazon. Check out the information here:

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